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Man's monogamous relationship with poly fiancé reaches toxic breaking point. AITA? UPDATED

Man's monogamous relationship with poly fiancé reaches toxic breaking point. AITA? UPDATED

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When this man feels like his relationship with his fiancé is doomed, he asks the internet:

"My monogamous relationship with my poly fiancé has broken down. AITA?"

I M36 am monogamous. My fiancé F35 is polyamorous. I am leaving her two months before our wedding and haven't told her yet.

I didn't have an issue with her being poly. Still don't to be honest. I've dated poly people casually in the past, and honestly we both thought this would be a fling but we fell in love. We couldn't be apart.

We couldn't stop thinking of each other. We supported each other. We carried each other. We moved in together. We want a family. We want kids. She's the best thing that's ever happened to me. I proposed last summer. I still love her.

We have rules. She has four preexisting partners from before we met. Its a out of sight out of mind mentality. She tells me who she is meeting, but no other details. Her idea to make it easier for me.

He partners don't live near us, so it's once in a blue moon she meets them. Some of those relationships are a decade old, so I've never asked her to be monogamous or to take it away from her. I've met her poly partners. They are great guys (most of them anyway).

As a monogamous person it doesn't feel great, but I promised to support her and considering we're engaged it was working. Why I want to leave her is a few reasons.

She has maintained since our first date she doesn't like public displays of affection. No kissing, no touching. Handholding is rare. She said it makes her really uncomfortable, so I don't do it. When she's with her partners though, its completely different.

She straddled one on a barstool once, and rubbed her nose in his cheek, and when they stood up she rubbed her ass against his crotch. In front of me.

Another time we were in a group picnic and one of them showed up and she kept rubbing her hands between his legs.

Its not comfortable for me, but I let it go. She's with me almost the entire year bar like 4 to 5 days when someone comes in town.

But firstly, shes breaking our rules. She knows she's not suppose to do that in front of me. We agreed to it together. Secondly, she never does that with me. Not once. And that's draining.

It finally came to a head for me when she wanted to throw a party for us for our engagement because we never had one. One of her partners flew in and to surprise her. She got drunk, and if we weren't in public they would have ended up having sex in that bar.

They were running their hands underneath their clothes with me sitting a few feet from them. Our friends kept asking me if I was okay, it was that intense. I had to step outside and she came after me after a few minutes.

She started crying, I tried to hug her to tell her its okay and she shoved me away and went back in. We didn't speak the rest of the night. Later that night she wanted to have sex and I just wasn't in the mood.

I started thinking over the things over the years that have happened between us, especially when it comes to sex and affection.

She is into very vanilla sex. I am not. She's the first person I've had vanilla sex with since I lost my virginity. She doesn't even want to spoon because she says she doesn't like it.

I found out she performs anal with one of her partners, and does other things that are a no-no in our bedroom with them because she says its just one night out of the year and allows it even if she doesn't like it.

She does things she knows I enjoy, but she won't do them with me. I respect her choices, so I don't do them. She's important to me.

About a year into us living together I found a massive dildo in her things. She told she doesn't like sex toys because they feel too artificial and she doesn't want something like that in her. It turns out that dildo is reserved for one of her partners to play with her because he likes it. It's there for just one night a year when she lets it go.

Then I found out she went hiking with one of them and they ended up having sex in public. We were at a private spot at a beach once and when I joked about it and she told absolutely not, so doesn't do that.

I realized I'm the safe option. I'm just the person who she can come home to. Doesn't need to worry about what happens in public or bed. I only do the things she enjoys for her sake. I don't like being the safe option.

I used to be wild before I met her. And I don't understand, if these were people who she has a decade of relationships with, why don't they know she doesn't like any of this?

I spoke to her about public displays of affection, not even sex, once and asked her why she won't do them with me but she straight up gropes her other partners in public. She got mad and told me I was jealous.

Her poly friends told me the same thing. That I'm being jealous and that polyamory is about letting jealously go. Everything I've read online talks about jealousy. Jealous jealous jealous.

Of course I'm jealous. I'm hurt. I'm human and I have needs and desires too. Jealous just seems like the umbrella term for an excuse. Does that make me wrong to want to be affectionate with my partner, but I'm apparently the only who respects her likes and wishes?

If someone flirts with me, she's immediately on it. She makes it clear to them I'm taken. She will argue and fight if she needs too. She tells me all the time if I cheat on her she'll leave me. If I sleep with anyone else she'll leave me.

She knows I won't do polygamy (it's not my thing), and I would never cheat on her. The chances have happened, and I've shot it down immediately. I only want her.

So I want to end our relationship and our engagement. I love her, but maybe I need to think of myself. I don't want to leave her. What do you think?

Before we give you OP's update, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

lex1954 writes:

You are not her fiancée, you are her "pet". She rewards you when you are good and punishes you when you are not. She makes you sit in the corner like a "good boy" whilst she throws herself at other men. Like a "pet" you have rules to follow whilst she lives a life with no boundaries.

Take off that collar and get your life and self-respect back before it's too late, end this relationship and call off this ridiculous wedding. And for God's sake get some new friends because the ones you have are idiots (they must be her friends).

aok8 writes:

What is wrong with you that you accept such blatant double standards and misuse. Its as though all her passion s reserved for others and your existence is to provide her comfort in between bursts of wildness.

What drives you to accept this for yourself? Get out now. No more slinking around hiding your resentment. Tell her to leave and that there is no chance of resolution. Have friends, true friends, present as she is clearly very manipulative and retribution is likely.

Do not feel the need for dramatic gestures, explanation, or aggression. Be cold and polite. She knows what she has been doing. Words will merely be used against you. Block all her wretched accomplices.

Christ man, she insisted on an engagement party so she could f someone else. She is beyond awful. Act today and stop all this passive aggressive crap. That is what has got you into this. Be decisive.

kalavra7 writes:

First off, the way she's treating you is a big NO even from the poly community. I'm not sure if I'm poly but I've explored the community and when it's done right, it shouldn't be like that. She's holding double standards in her relationships and that's not alright.

Last year, i was in a poly relationship. My mom went into the hospital and i asked him to talk on the phone when i was on my way home because i was not doing well. He said yes, but instead ended up with his partner and ignored me the whole night. That was when I checked out of the relationship.

To frame the situation another way, without the sex and relationships: when i was younger, i used to beg my mom to go to this one specific restaurant with me and to rewatch star wars. But no, the restaurant was too far away and she already watched star wars once so she didn't want to rewatch them with me.

Then she got into a relationship and took him to the restaurant and kicked me off the living room tv when my friend and i were watching something so she could watch star wars with him.

I was pissed and hurt and it had nothing to do with my jealousy over their relationship. But when you spend years putting aside your feelings for someone else, only to have them turn around and do the things youve begged for with another person, it really hurts.

Why was i not good enough to do these things for? Why couldn't she, for once, choose me and my wants over hers and her partners?

chzaeey writes:

End it. It's making you miserable. You're not "jealous". That's some bullshit being thrown at you to try and invalidate some very serious issues you have with your relationship.

Your relationship isn't poly, it's manipulative. By doing shit she "does not do" with others, she's being disrespectful to you and your relationship. Not that she has to do these things with you.

It's her body and she's free to make the choice of what sexual acts she wants to participate in, but by having a hard boundary she's willing to compromise on with others, is disrespectful to herself.

Disrespecting herself in front of you is disrespectful to your relationship. Disrespecting your relationship in public in front of other people is very disrespectful to you.

Non traditional relationships are hard to navigate. It takes a lot of understanding, trust, and communication. When everyone involved is upfront and honest they can work out fine, but you have to reinforce those three principles.

By not even talking to you about the issues you have, your partner isn't holding up her end. Like any other social sphere there are also people with shit opinions. So when those people say "you're just jealous" they're really saying that they should just have free reign to do whatever they want without any recourse. However that's not how any relationship works.

You should remove yourself from a relationship any time your partner has the mindset that they should have rules and boundaries you need to observe and respect, and which you are never allowed to ignore, but that they should be able to do anything they want and you should just accept that. That's not what a partnership is.

champpuppy writes:

This relationship is hurting you and in the long run you're only bound for more hurt. Resentment will kick in from both of you. Your are better off breaking things off for the best of both of you. You are currently miserable and not getting what you need in the relationship.

Also, she's allowed to sleep with different partners but, if you did too it wouldn't be okay? In the long run these issues will keep creeping up and getting worse best to call it quits before unless you want to live miserable for the next year's + divorce is expensive.

catylsncorpse writes:

You don't just "maybe" need to think of yourself. You HAVE to think of yourself. Bottom line is that this relationship is completely incompatible and her "needs" clearly come before your own.

I mean, shit, she's willing to do stuff with these other people that she won't even do with her fiance. That is so fd up. She ain't vanilla, she's only vanilla with YOU. I want you to think about that for a bit. Your sexual needs aren't being met NOW, and if you marry her, 10 years down the line they still won't be being met and you'll be fg miserable.

I think that it's weird that she threatens to leave you if you cheat on her. It makes me wonder if she's projecting and whether or not she's actually doing a lot more stuff with a lot more people that you don't know about.

Seriously, though, don't let this woman treat you like a doormat. Get out while you still can. It's much easier to break up with someone than it is to divorce someone. And next time you date someone, find yourself a monogamous person who you are sexually compatible with and who likes the same freaky-deaky stuff that you do.

And now, OP's major update:

Firstly, thank you to everyone who reached out. I did not expect that post to explode like it did.

I want to keep the update brief but I don't know if it will be, I'm not in the best place right now. I'll try and respond to everyone who messaged me privately.

I received a lot of advice from many people. Most was to leave her, some people gave me different perspectives. Had some poly community members message me their insight too, thank you.

I spoke to her. I told her I wanted to end the engagement and move on with our lives. She wasn't happy. She said she loved me and said this is what she was worried about from our first date. She said she doesn't want things to end.

I told her I need more in the relationship, I needed what she gave her other partners. I told her I'm going to be your husband, your main partner for life. I told her I wasn't comfortable with what she does with them around me. I told her she's not suppose to do what she does in front of me.

I told her I've taken the advice of and spoken to some people regarding it, and that maybe being in a mono-poly relationship was just never meant to be. She told me she just wants me, she wants to spend her life with me, she wants to have children with me, and grow old with me.

For the first time in 3 years together I asked her if she is saying she is going monogamous. She said no, she wants to stay poly. She said her other relationships mean too much to her. She said she won't open up with me physically in public, or the things we do in bed, until she's more comfortable with me.

She said she's known her partners for a decade, and so she's comfortable with them. I told her we're getting married, how much closer to me do you need to get?

I asked her why she said yes when I proposed if she didn't feel as close to me as her other partners. She just said because she loved me and wanted to spend her life with me, again. I told her it doesn't make sense. I told her I can't do it anymore, and I won't change her, but I won't keep doing this to myself.

It was a lot of back and forth. Lot of I love you and I want to be with you on both ends, but hang ups on both ends as well. We never really yelled or screamed, but we were both angry and upset and hurt.

Ultimately, we've decided to postpone the wedding while we figure things out. The engagement hasn't ended yet. I've moved in with a relative not far from our place for now. I think its over, I've told myself it is.

I just feel tortured and hurt. Its been a few days and she tries to call me once everyday. I've only picked up a few times. She keeps saying she loves me and we'll sort it out.

I've had some of her friends (poly and mono both) reach out on her behalf. They said they've talked to her about her other relationships and about ours. They said she's really shattered and she wants me to come home, but doesn't want to lose her identity in the process.

She came from a very conservative background, and coming out as LGBT and polyamorous was a big, liberating moment in her life.

They said to their knowledge she hasn't reached out to any of her other partners and doesn't want to until we know what is happening between us.

My family and friends have told me to do what's best for me. My closest friend told me maybe I should move on, he said 4 days a year isn't worth the torture knowing what she does with others even if she is a great person.

Some of my friends never knew she was poly, and they told me to end it once they found out. They were angry that I would put myself into a relationship like this. They said I was torturing myself for something I should have always known was doomed to fail. They all really liked her. We had couples dinners with some of them at least once a month.

I know my first post didn't paint her well, but she was wonderful. Supportive and loving. We started dating before COVID hit, and I lost my job and she carried us for months.

She didn't have to, it hadn't even been 6 months of dating. Some of her friends told her to drop me, but she said no and she told them I'd get back on my feet soon.

We were quarantined together because she asked me to stay with her because she was lonely, but I know its because I couldn't afford my rent anymore and she gave me a place to be. She did so much for me, more than I deserved. I've spent everyday since I picked myself up trying to pay her back for all she did and still does for me.

I know a lot of people have used some colorful words in their messages about her to me on here, but she's not those things.

I don't want to lose someone that wonderful. Right now I just feel like it's over and I don't want to do anything except cry and I'm a mess. I'm hoping my head clears soon and that I'll know what to do for me.

We said we'd give it a month apart and come back to it, so in a few weeks we'll see where we stand. As of right now, I'm considering it over.

Readers continued to weigh in on OP's story:

crazyperformer writes:

Leaving will be hard but it has to be done. For your sake, for your mentality and your well being.

You should NEVER be with someone who makes you feel like the “safe option” you deserve to be loved wholeheartedly, you deserve to be treated with love, adoration and respect. Do you feel these things in your current relationship?

In 5 or 6 years, what’s going to happen if y’all have kids? You’re going to be stuck at home w the kids while she’s off riding one of her other bf’s into the sunset. Is that what you want? Put an end to it now, again, before children.

What’s going to happen then? You get left at home while she’s with one of them? Your kids going out with mommy and one of her bfs? Don’t set yourself up for any further heartbreak, cut your losses, mourn/grieve the loss of the relationship and find someone who love you undoubtedly.

Also tell her friends to deepthroat a cactus, jealousy is a normal human emotion. especially when your partner is providing someone else something you crave, while simultaneously withholding/denying you of.

tribalr writes:

You'll never be happy. You're right, you're the "safe" option - she gets to have whatever normal life she wants, giving you the bare minimum to keep you with her, and she gets to have wild and kinky flings with her partners whom she knows you wouldn't dare to cut her off from.

She doesn't want you. She wants the stability for whenever she's not cutting loose with someone else. And you deserve better.

Poly isn't a sexuality, it's a lifestyle. She could choose to be monogamous with you, but she doesn't. She never will. You could choose to be polyamorous with her, but you won't. It doesn't interest you, just like being monogamous doesn't interest her.

You can put it out bluntly, and I encourage you to do so - "I thought I could be okay with your side of the relationship being open, but I realized that I can't. You treat me drastically different from your other partners and that isn't okay with me.

I've decided I want a monogamous lifestyle and a monogamous marriage...even if that means it will never be with you. It's over, and I'm sorry I didn't realize that I needed to set firmer boundaries on my end when we first became serious."

What do YOU make of OP's story?

Sources: Reddit
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